About an hour ago, I was struck by a realisation that packed my head in cotton batting. I am feeling emotional, but since the batting has been stitched closed over my head, the tears are still on the inside. That huge thing I embarked upon; the adventure of beautiful words and far-flung hor— you know the next word in this sentence, don’t you?
Well that horizon, about an hour ago, flew straight at me with a roaring rush. It screamed to a halt right in front of my feet. If I step, it will be over the edge of the world. I don’t know what my world looks like from the other side of the horizon, and my chest feels tight. Right now, as I write this to you — the prickle on the inside of my forehead and the pressure against my cheekbones is real.
What if I could publish a book, right now? What if an editor who cares, unexpectedly fits me into their schedule next week and I publish a book? Huge achievements are a series of little moments flowing this way or that way according to my choices. By keeping the horizon waaaaay over there *points*, I was able to be perfectly comfortable and safe.
I know I tend to start a project with an enthusiasm that is rarely surpassed, even by the most enthusiastic toddler aiming for a proffered sweet and sticky something. However, I also know what happens next. I smear the sweet stickiness over my cheeks. Then when I finally leap off my current adventure of choice, my good intentions are left to careen into the nearest barren place. By the time I remember to wash my face, it is a painful and ugly process. Ah self-criticism, there you are again.
I have a completed novella. It exists.
I thought this huge thing I am doing HAD to be a full-length novel. But, what if it is a collection of five novellas? And what if the next four novels I have planned are each a collection of novellas?
What if I actually finish something wonderful, and keep right on doing more of the same? Is that what the world looks like from the other side of my horizon?
My mind is blown wide open at the possibility and I am going to have a little lie down now.